Day 22
by Denee Bowers on March 13th, 2021
Saturday, March 13Exodus 35-36"Then all the congregation of the Israelites withdrew from the presence of Moses. And they came, everyone whose heart was stirred, and everyone whose spirit was willing, and brought the Lord’s offering to be used for the tent of meeting, and for all its service, and for the sacred vestments. All the Israelite men and women whose hearts made them willing to bring anyth...  Read More
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Hope Is A Good Thing // M-Note 3.12.2021
by Amy Sanders on March 12th, 2021
“Hope is a good thing, maybe the best thing.” In case you don’t recognize it, it’s a line from Shawshank Redemption. It is one of those movies that anytime I see it on tv, I have to stop and just watch. I recently introduced it to George, my youngest. I’ve seen it 100 times, but he had never heard of it. The line above is one that Andy shares with his friend Red. They are both in prison, probably ...  Read More
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Day 21
by Denee Bowers on March 12th, 2021
Friday, March 12Exodus 33-34I have a couple of friends who I have known for years, but don’t see all that often anymore. We live in different cities and juggle busy lives, so we don’t talk as often as we once did. When we do reconnect, though, we get deep in a hurry. We talk for hours and cover every topic under the sun.I bring this up, because this is how Moses and God’s conversation in these two...  Read More
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Day 20
by Denee Bowers on March 11th, 2021
Thursday, March 11Exodus 32For Christmas, my 4 year old son got a pair of Mario and Luigi remote control cars. He. Loves. Them. Whenever they come out of storage, there is low-level chaos in the house. The small cars are ramming into doors and baseboards. He lines them up so they can ramp off steps to a thundering crash. Of course eventually the cars run out of battery life and need to be recharge...  Read More
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Day 19
by Denee Bowers on March 10th, 2021
Wednesday, March 10Exodus 30-31Have you ever attempted to read the Bible cover-to-cover? If you have, you know that starting with Genesis is easy and entertaining -- it covers the Creation story, the fall of Adam and Eve, Noah’s ark, and Joseph, whose saga and elaborate cloak inspired Broadway. Then, the epic saga continues in Exodus where you meet Pharaoh, Moses, and the Israselites, and God send...  Read More
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Day 18
by Denee Bowers on March 9th, 2021
Tuesday, March 9Exodus 28-29These two chapters discuss priestly garments, Aaron’s consecration, the tent of meeting, one-time and ongoing rituals involving sacrifices. Before I lose you, remember that Israelites did not have a set priesthood yet and God was establishing them as being “set apart” from the rest of the world.We are talking about a lineage of people who were slaves previously; traumat...  Read More
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Day 17
by Denee Bowers on March 8th, 2021
Monday, March 8Exodus 26-27Let’s level with one another for a second: if you’re reading through the second half of Exodus, you’re in some pretty dense and altogether BORING reading. I feel like it’s good to name that on the front end. This is the part of the Bible where people reading the Bible in a year start to veer off course around the end of January. Because there’s no action. There are no wh...  Read More
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The Third Sunday in Lent
by Denee Bowers on March 7th, 2021
The Third Sunday in LentSunday, March 7In the Catholic tradition there are three pillars of Lent: fasting, prayer, and almsgiving. The third pillar, almsgiving, often gets overlooked in our observance of the season. Almsgiving is a fancy word for charity. It is considered a form of prayer because almsgiving is meant to be a way of giving to God (Matthew 25:40). Just as we make sacrifices through f...  Read More
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Day 16
by Denee Bowers on March 6th, 2021
Saturday, March 6Exodus 23:20-25:40You want to know that a child is serious about a commitment? Don’t just ask them to promise. Ask them to pinky promise. Similar to upping the ante on a dare to a double dog dare, the pinky promise is the most sacred of vows. While we can’t be sure whether God asked Moses and the Israelites to pinky promise, today’s reading does include a very significant commitme...  Read More
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Day 15
by Denee Bowers on March 5th, 2021
Friday, March 5Exodus 20:22-23-19“Signs” by Five Man Electrical Band, and later by Tesla, is such a great song that bucks authority. I’ve always had a problem with what I would consider stupid authority. Rules for no good reason. As I read the scripture passage in Exodus 20:22-23:19, the hair on my neck begins to stand up. Because man, “The Law” seems like a bunch of dumb rules.Probably because so...  Read More
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Easter Announcement // M-Note 2.27.2021
by Amy Sanders on March 4th, 2021
“The darkest hour of the night comes just before the dawn.” Those words were written by a English author and historian Thomas Fuller. I don’t know what was happening in his life or his world, at the time, but those words resonate with me. Especially now.  Read More
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Day 14
by Denee Bowers on March 4th, 2021
Thursday, March 4Exodus 19:1-20:21We all know children benefit from clear rules. While it sounds counterintuitive, children need the structure of rules to thrive and flourish. Rules provide consistency and predictability that is critical to the development of emotional well-being. And practically, rules help guide actions toward desired results. The problem with rules, though, is they can be manip...  Read More
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Day 13
by Denee Bowers on March 3rd, 2021
Wednesday, March 3Exodus 17-18When I enrolled in a theological graduate program in 2011, I was a bit older than many of my fellow students. I’d been a therapist for almost a decade before deciding to become a pastor, working with young survivors of sexual assault, and those years had opened my eyes to some of the painful realities that my future congregation members very likely faced. I knew that ...  Read More
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Day 12
by Denee Bowers on March 2nd, 2021
Tuesday, March 2Exodus 15:22-16:36 I love grocery shopping. I love planning the meals, making a list of items and ordering them by store layout, hand selecting my produce, and indulging in impulse purchases (Aldi’s “special buys” are my kryptonite).Before the pandemic hit, I was used to doing my grocery shopping in-person, at least one big trip per week, and I never hesitated to stop in to pick up...  Read More
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Day 11
by Denee Bowers on March 1st, 2021
Monday, March 1Exodus 13:17-15:21It seems to me that many of us have idealized what it means to follow God’s nudges in our lives. The thought goes that once we finally figure out the direction God is encouraging us to go, we will lose all doubt, have great relationships and finally gain clarity about our life’s direction.  But I have found that instead of being a season of clarity, right after fol...  Read More
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The Second Sunday in Lent
by Denee Bowers on February 28th, 2021
The Second Sunday in LentSunday, February 28Lent is a season of fasting and prayer. Fasting and prayer. Last week we focused on establishing the pattern of some type of fast. Now that you have removed something from your day-to-day, you should be finding a bit of space opening up. A slower pace and a simplified way of life are a cause for celebration on their own, but they also give us the opportu...  Read More
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Day 10
by Denee Bowers on February 27th, 2021
Saturday, February 27Exodus 12:1-13:16If there is one word I would use to describe the season of life we’re living in it is this. Change.Almost everyone has had to experience some kind of change over the last year. We’ve seen our leaders in government change. Our roles or our jobs may have changed. Visiting family has changed.Imagine if every aspect of the change you’ve seen this year was led by  ...  Read More
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Day 9
by Denee Bowers on February 26th, 2021
Thursday, February 25Exodus 9:1-11:10In today’s reading of Exodus 9:1-11:10, Moses comes to Pharaoh with more warnings as we see the plagues continue.When my son was 6, we watched “The Prince of Egypt”. He was so fascinated by Pharaoh. He asked questions I couldn’t keep up with. “Pharaoh was a smart nice dad who loved Moses at the beginning of the movie. Why would he fight God? Why did he have sla...  Read More
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Day 8
by Denee Bowers on February 25th, 2021
Thursday, February 25Exodus 6:28-8:32Um, plagues? I have to admit, it took me a moment to wrap my head and heart around this long passage. I confess that my reflection led me to my own refusal, rejections, and stubbornness.Pharaoh digs his heels in. Scripture says this was in part God’s doing. Despite Moses asking for time off to worship, for example, Pharaoh refuses.  This entire passage is an il...  Read More
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Generosity - Jane Davis
by Jim Schutz on February 24th, 2021
Listen to Jane Davis share how generosity has impacted her life.  Read More
Day 7
by Denee Bowers on February 24th, 2021
Wednesday, February 24Exodus 5:1-6:27You know the saying -- “things are gonna get worse before they get better.” We all experience this reality from time to time. In fact, this is the very reason I’ve been putting off cleaning out the refrigerator! But whether it’s tackling an unpleasant project, or facing a significant change in our lives, we may have to endure a period of worsening circumstances...  Read More
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Day 6
by Denee Bowers on February 23rd, 2021
Tuesday, February 23Exodus 3-4After rereading the story of Moses and the burning bush, I realized a couple things. First, God will always find unexpected ways to guide us in our life, and we have to surrender and trust that God knows the path we are to take. Second, to always be on the lookout for God’s signs in our day-to-day. I’m a senior in High School this year and I have no clue what is next ...  Read More
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Day 5
by Denee Bowers on February 22nd, 2021
Monday, February 22Exodus 1-2“First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Socialist.Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out- – Because I was not a Trade Unionist.Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out— Because I was not a Jew.Then they came for me–and there was no one left to speak for me.”I’ve read different versions of th...  Read More
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The First Sunday in Lent
by Denee Bowers on February 21st, 2021
Sunday, February 21The First Sunday in LentEasily the most popular rule in the official Lent rulebook is the one that tells us we can break our fast on Sundays during the season.Ok, there’s not really an official Lent rulebook. Instead, there are traditions and ways of engaging Lent embraced by generations of Christ followers that we get to join in. One of those common practices is to set Sundays ...  Read More
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